Video Tip on Rescuing Wire from!

By on May 10, 2010
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Have you ever been wrapping along, when suddenly your pliers take a wrong turn? Or maybe you started a pattern, but it didn’t turn out right. There has to be a way to save this wire!

Dale “Cougar” Armstrong is here to help you straighten your bent and kinked wire!

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Please note, we are currently working with recyclers to offer a discount to our customers who send in their wire scraps. However, we do not have this program set up yet. We will let you know as soon as we have the program available!


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  2. avatar

    Connie Drake

    May 10, 2010 at 9:03 pm

    I have a comment about your video. I would use nylon jaw pliers. You use a pair of flat nose pliers, with the wire down into the pliers’s jaws so you can hang on pretty tight. Then grab the nylon jaw pliers and place them parallel. Pull with the nylon jaw pliers and you can get a pretty straight wire. It is still work hardened, but I think it makes it look less textured.

    Can you let me know if there is a reason not to do it this way?

    • avatar


      May 10, 2010 at 11:45 pm

      Hi Connie, personally I do not like to use nylon pliers for straightening tight folds, kinks or bends when salvaging wire, as this does work harden the entire length and where the bend/kink was, the wire will more than likely break, due to the additional hardening. However each person will try a variety of methods, and experience will tell them when to use what technique to its best advantage.

  3. avatar

    Laura Book

    May 12, 2010 at 9:09 am

    Hi Dale,

    I enjoy your videos. You are so generous with your knowledge and I look forward to more of them. Thank you!

  4. avatar

    connie h

    May 14, 2010 at 1:53 am

    Would you be able to use this wire as twisted wire so that it doesn’t show the small kinks and marks that remain?

    • avatar


      May 14, 2010 at 9:28 am

      Connie – you could try to twist the newly unkinked wire, however it will more than likely break where the kinks were while twisting it, and if it doesn’t break then, it will break when you bend it to use it in a design.

  5. avatar


    July 25, 2010 at 4:26 pm

    Thanks for the tips.

  6. avatar


    October 12, 2011 at 12:47 pm

    One tried and true method I use for getting kinks and curves out of wire is to use a pair of half-round pliers. The pliers I have are made by Grobet and are wider than the type you would find at a bead or craft store. I’ve found that buying good pliers and paying the money up front saves you in the long-term. The pair I have cost $40 in 2004, but they will last me many years, if not a lifetime.

    I position the curved part of the pliers on the OUTSIDE of the kink or curve and then close the pliers. This straightens it fairly well – then you just have to work both sides of the wire.

    I work mostly with dead soft sterling or fine silver wire because I work the wire a LOT, and dead soft wire can be annealed at least once without causing it to become brittle.

    If you are working with dead soft sterling or fine silver wire, once you have it fairly straight, just take a pencil torch, lay the wire on your solder pad, and pass the torch over it several times, but don’t melt it! Pick it up with your copper tongs (this is providing you have this equipment) and dump it in your pickle – I use vinegar and salt and it works very well.

    Take it out after a few moments, dip in a clear water bath and then it is soft and pliable again, and you can then gently pass your cleaning cloth over it to get it fully straight. Annealing sterling too many times will make it brittle, so I’d suggest you only do it once.

    If you are using copper wire – (and make sure it’s pure copper!) you can anneal as much as you want. Annealing won’t make it brittle. Just heat until it glows, but doesn’t melt. Dump in the pickle, to remove the oxidation (if you want it removed), and then in the clear water bath. Then pass your cleaning cloth along the length and there you have it – straight wire. :)

    Even if you’re not a metalsmith, it’s a grand idea to have a pencil torch and solder pad set up. For me, it’s a quick and easy way to straighten wire. Once you’re comfortable with your torch, you can make your own head pins with sterling, copper and fine silver wire just by drawing a bead on the end.

  7. avatar


    June 10, 2014 at 6:07 am

    Please, what are the recipe proportions for the vinegar and salt pickle? Thanks!

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